Unwelcome Neighbor: Homeowners Protest Cell Tower At City Meeting

Posted on: 10:05 pm, June 11, 2013, by , updated on: 02:21pm, June 12, 2013

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FAYETTEVILLE, Tenn.(WHNT)-An ongoing battle over a new cell phone tower went before city leaders in Fayetteville, Tennessee, Tuesday night.

Angry homeowners who live next to the tower on Washington Street showed up to Tuesday night’s board of alderman meeting. The homeowners said the 250 foot tall tower has caused their property values to plummet in recent months and also poses a safety hazard.

Fayetteville Mayor John Underwood told the homeowners that the city is entirely within the bounds of the law, regardless of any negative effect on them. The City of Fayetteville’s Planning Commission approved the tower project last year. The commission is a non-elected body appointed by the board of alderman and the mayor said they had the green light to move forward on the tower since all of the affected homes reside in a commercial zone.

“The planning commission only did by law what they’re required to do,” Mayor Underwood told audience members.

The homeowners told WHNT News 19 that they’re now pondering legal action against the city.

“Obviously, I’m dissatisfied with the exchange,” said Olen Mitchell, whose house lies directly behind the tower. “It was obvious he [Mayor Underwood] wanted to shut me down as quick as possible. We’ll move forward.  And, if it’s legal action, so be it.”

Mayor Underwood also sits on the planning commission and was the only member who voted against the tower project when it was approved last year.